Posted at 16:56 on 15 Mar 2010 by Pandora / Blake
I was recently fascinated to discover CorPun.com, a research site devoted to cataloguing reported incidents of CP across the world. I ended up losing about two hours to browsing the archives, which was simultaneously hot and disturbing. The site features a lot (and I mean a lot) of real, modern CP in a school or judicial setting, mostly from African, Middle Eastern or East Asian countries.
It's weird, but although I fully accept my kink and am well versed on the difference between fantasy and reality, I still struggle with the grey area caused by fantasising about some kinds of real-life events. It's really hard to find a pattern in what I think is okay, because it's pretty inconsistent. Here are some examples:
Real events I am uncomfortable fantasising about:
- Most contemporary school CP in other countries, particularly involving underage schoolchildren (the exceptions being North America and Europe)
- CP used by the agents of a contemporary oppressive regime against the inhabitants of that regime
- White people using CP against people of colour in a political/oppressive context (e.g. slavery)
- CP used by colonials against native inhabitants of the countries they've conquered
- Religiously motivated patriarchal violence against women and children
- Sexual abuse of children
- Anything involving Nazis or the Holocaust
Real events I am comfortable fantasising about:
- Pretty much any historical judicial or school CP in England
- Most modern school CP in Europe or English-colonised countries
- Judicial CP involving a Western person travelling to a contemporary country and being caught by the regime there
- Institutionalised patriarchal violence against women in the context of the historical West (e.g. domestic wife-beating, workhouses, madhouses)
- (Most) historical use of CP against underage children which did not have a sexual element
It's messy, though, with exceptions: like, I'm not comfortable with anything involving the Taliban, but I'm happy with fantasies set in the Christian Church, unless it involves real, close-to-home atrocities such as child abuse in Ireland. I'm happy with most stuff in a European setting but I'm squicked by the Inquisition. I very rarely find real modern incidences of rape or violence against women erotic, except sometimes I randomly do.
To make it even more complicated, the "fantasies I'm uncomfortable with" list is divided, seemingly at random, between scenarios I find hot-but-simultaneously-squicky, and scenarios I just don't find hot.
I think basically my fantasies are moderated by a strong but rather imprecise wariness of cultural appopriation. Anything from my own culture is more likely to be appealing. There's also a bit of a "get out of jail free" card for historical events, some distance having been achieved in the meantime, and real people hopefully not being in danger of having to endure the experience these days. But it's a big mess of exceptions and inconsistencies, and it varies depending on time and context as well, so I can't even map it accurately.
All this only applies to my own head - I don't presume to judge anyone else who does enjoy any of the above scenarios, as I think it's mostly a question of personal taste. What ethical considerations do exist (the debate about Nazi fantasies, for instance) are best left to the conscience of the individual, although I think there's a consensus that exposing people affected by real atrocities to your sexual fantasies about them is generally poor form.
It was absolutely fascinating browsing CorPun.com and finding out what turned me on and what turned me right off. All the images in this post are ones that pressed my buttons. Ask me again in ten years time, though, and the answers will no doubt be different.
I'll leave you with an image which I found exciting even though it contained no actual CP; a photo taken at Eton in the 1940s or 1950s:
I love this because it personalises all the historical school scenarios I like; suddenly the anonymous schoolboys and prefects have faces, and the canes hanging on the wall attest that CP was a part of these young mens' lives. I like this picture much more than all the shots of anonymous welted bottoms from the same time and place. Perhaps, too, the fact that this is merely suggestive rather than explicitly showing an actual punishment makes it more appealing. If I were to see a photo of any one of these boys being beaten, part of me would wince at the fact of genuine nonconsent, the invasion of privacy; but looking from face to face, not knowing which might have suffered in what way, I can let my imagination roam.